The Teacher-Ranger-Teacher (TRT) program is an extended professional development opportunity for educators from K -12 schools to learn about the resources and educational materials available through the National Park Service. Teachers participating in TRT will have the opportunity to engage in parks and park resources, participate in a webinar about lesson planning, develop at least one lesson to be used in their classroom or school, assist the park with an education project, and increase their understanding of place-based learning. Administration of the program, professional development hours, and graduate credit hours will be made available to participants through a cooperative agreement with the University of Colorado, Denver.
The emphasis of this program is to link national park units and teachers from schools with underserved student populations in urban and rural school districts. TRTs perform various tasks depending on their interests and the needs of the park that focus on education programs of the National Park Service. TRTs spend most of their time engaging with park education projects, learning about park resources, and developing lesson plans to use in their classrooms and in the park with students. Their experience will also include exposure to a variety of work performed in national park units by employees from many career fields. When TRTs return to the schools in the fall, they spend part of their classroom time presenting their TRT projects to their own students and to a wider education audience. These presentations can be connected to the National Park Service outreach during National Park Week in April or at other times during the school year.
- Provide teachers with place-based learning experiences,
- Provide access to the rich resources of the national parks for inclusion into classrooms and schools,
- Provide teachers with new knowledge and teacher skills related to the resources and themes interpreted in the National Park Service, and
- Provide parks with the expertise of teachers to inform and shape park education programs and services.